2012 was the 141st year after the founding of the City of Birmingham.
- January 2: The J & M Child Development Center on Bessemer Road was damaged by arson.
- January: General Attractions LLC purchased the Alabama Adventure theme park from Adrenaline Family Entertainment.
- January 17: William Bell delivered the 2012 State of the City address to the Kiwanis Club of Birmingham.
- January 23: An early morning tornado outbreak caused widespread damage in Jefferson County.
- January 26: Radio host Steve Harvey filled in as "Principal for a Day" at Phillips Academy.
- January 29: Five people were found shot to death at a home in Ensley Highlands.
- February 2: Birmingham Bill saw his shadow, predicting 6 more weeks of winter.
- March 23: October Baby was released nationally.
- April 17: The Birmingham City Council passed an anti-smoking ordinance affecting all places of employment.
- May 4: The @DailyMtnEagle parody Twitter account was launched.
- May 5: Fire damaged the Stadium Grill in Bessemer.
- May 10: Fire damaged Cosmos Sports Bar and Grill in Norwood.
- May 12: Birmingham International Street Fair
- May 12: Evangelist Matt Pitt was arrested and charged with impersonating a law enforcement officer.
- May 13-20: Shooting for 42, a feature film about Jackie Robinson's first year in the Major Leagues.
- May 25-27: Alabama Phoenix Festival
- June 9: 2012 Shelby County Airport plane crash
- September 17: 2012 Ardell plane crash in Cullman County.
- October 6: A single-engine airplane crashed on the 2800 block of 2nd Avenue North with no fatalities.
- October 12-14: Barber Vintage Festival at Barber Motorsports Park
- November 30: Fire damaged VJ's on the Runway in East Lake.
- The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency designated the 35th Avenue Superfund Site, including parts of the Birmingham neighborhoods of Collegeville, Fairmont and Harriman Park .
- January 1: WZRR-FM switched from the classic rock "Rock 99" format, to a modern hits format as "99.5 The Vibe".
- January 1: WJOX-AM changed its name from "WJOX 690 AM" to "690 The Fan".
- January 26: CityCoupons.com and PricePunch.com merged.
- February: Belle Foods purchased 57 grocery stores from Southern Family Markets.
- Iron Tribe Fitness opened on 3rd Avenue South downtown.
- Saw's BBQ opened a second location on 41st Street South in Avondale.
- March 29: Freshfully won the Occupy Avondale contest.
- April 9: Concert Care was launched at Innovation Depot.
- April: Jacob Shevin took over as president of Standard Furniture.
- Primavera coffee roasters moved to Homewood under the Octane nameplate.
- April: Sababa kosher restaurant opened on Overton Road.
- April 4: Regions Bank completed repayment of a $3.5 billion loan from the United States' Troubled Asset Relief Program.
- April 24: Greg's Hot Dogs cart began operating downtown.
- May 1: Freshfully opened its retail store at 200 41st Street South.
- May 18: Alabama Trust Bank was closed by regulators and acquired by Southern States Bank.
- May: Balch & Bingham merged with Presley Burton & Collier.
- May: Steel City Pops opened on Central Avenue in Homewood.
- May: Mad Doctor Game Shop opened at 1318 20th Street South.
- May 30: Earth Fare opened at the Riverchase Galleria.
- June: Massey, Stotser & Nichols merged with Sherrer & Sherrer.
- July: Millie Ray's moved from Montgomery to Irondale's Commerce Square Business Park.
- August: The Southern Diner opened in Trussville.
- August 24: North Tavern opened in Grayson Valley.
- August 31: Lakeside Coffee opened in Pell City.
- September 13: Johnny's Restaurant opened.
- September: Trios opened.
- September: Eli and Gwen Braxton reopened the Tide & Tiger Lounge near Legion Field.
- October 1: The Birmingham News moved from a daily-printed newspaper to a Sunday-Wednesday-Friday schedule.
- November: A Hole in One donut truck debuted.
- November 20: World of Beer in Pickwick Plaza opened.
- November 27: Steel Drum Grill opened in the former Sababa location on Overton Road.
- December: Iron City Live opened.
- Indie Candy relocated from Crestline Village to Moody.
- JukeSlot was founded.
- Fancy Goods Variety opened at Rocky Ridge Square in Vestavia Hills.
- January 2: McCormick & Schmick's at Brookwood Village closed.
- March 30: Gallery Soleil closed.
- April 30: Mabe Power Equipment in Trussville closed.
- May: The Association of Cajun Music Enthusiasts disbanded.
- May 4: Adams Produce filed for bankruptcy.
- July 8: Both locations of Legends Smokehouse closed.
- August: Forest Perk closed.
- August 21: The Birmingham City Council revoked Mike's Crossroads' business license.
- September: North Birmingham Elementary School closed.
- September: Husky Grill closed.
- November 17: Lovoy's Italian restaurant closed.
- Cotton's department store closed.
- New Hope Christian School closed.
- Sababa closed.
- March: Birmingham purchased the remaining 45% stake in the Jefferson County Department of Human Resources building to swap with UAB for property in the Parkside District.
- The Birmingham Board of Education made repeated attempts to dismiss Birmingham City Schools Superintendent Craig Witherspoon, but a takeover by the Alabama Department of Education nullified those efforts.
- The Birmingham City Council missed its deadline to pass the 2013 Birmingham budget.
- August 28: 2012 municipal elections
- September 18: Voters passed the 2012 Alabama Trust Fund referendum.
- October 9: 2012 municipal elections runoff and 2012 Birmingham bond referendum
- October 22: 2012 Birmingham neighborhood elections
- November 5: Vestavia Hills converted from a mayor-council government to council-manager.
- November 6: 2012 general election
- January 9: The 2011 Alabama Crimson Tide football team secured its 14th national championship with a 21-0 win over LSU.
- March 13: Samford Bulldogs men's basketball coach Jimmy Tillette was fired by athletic director Martin Newton.
- March 16: UAB Blazers coach Mike Davis men's basketball coach was fired by athletic director Brian Mackin.
- March 27: Jerod Haase was hired as head coach of the UAB Blazers men's basketball team.
- March 30–April 1: Will Power won the Indy Grand Prix of Alabama.
- May 6: Brad Keselowski won the Aaron's 499 during his first season as Sprint Cup champion.
- May 30: 2012 Rickwood Classic at Rickwood Field.
- June 6: The Alabama Crimson Tide softball team won a national championship.
- November 25: Gene Chizik was fired as the Auburn Tigers football coach.
- February 1: Ted vonCannon succeeded Carma Jude as director of the Jefferson County Economic and Industrial Development Authority.
- Frank Adams, Jr was appointed president of A. G. Gaston Boys and Girls Clubs.
- Martie Duncan appeared on Food Network Star.
- Chris Hastings appeared on the Food Network's Iron Chef America.
- Janelle Issis appeared on FOX's So You Think You Can Dance.
- Richard Jacks earned his real estate license.
- Austin Squires, appeared on CMT's Sweet Home Alabama.
- Kyle Whitmire and Madison Underwood left WELD to work for the Alabama Media Group's flagship publication The Birmingham News.
- Alabama Women's Hall of Fame: Nina Miglionico
- Alabama Lawyers Hall of Fame: John Caddell, Logan Martin, Edwin Page, William Samford, David Vann
- Alabama State Teacher of the Year: Suzanne Culbreth, Spain Park High School
- Bobby Bowden Collegiate Coach of the Year Award: Nick Saban
- Miss Alabama: Anna Laura Bryan
- Miss Hoover: Briana Kinsey
- Miss Shelby County: Jamie Brooks
- Miss Trussville: Mecschelle Stringer
- James Spann was named "Broadcaster of the Year" by National Weather Association.
- College Football Hall of Fame: Marty Lyons
- October 1: Stanley Oliver retired as chief of the Alabaster Police Department.
- Malcolm Portera retired from the chancellorship of the University of Alabama System.
- Rena Hudson retired from the mayoralty of Warrior.
- Jacque Mayer retired from the directorate of the Greater Birmingham Humane Society.
- January 2: Michael O'Connor, chief of the North Shelby Fire and Emergency Medical District
- January 3: Gene Bartow, former UAB Blazers basketball coach and athletic director
- January 3: Ruby Ansley, interior designer
- January 4: Ken Ward, former WVTM-TV reporter
- January 9: Paul Terbenche, Birmingham Bulls defenseman
- January 13: Michael Matsos, restaurateur
- January 14: Jon Crow, Presbyterian pastor and missionary
- January 16: Kim Price, newspaper/magazine publisher
- January 19: Colonel Stone Johnson, Civil Rights guard
- January 19: Kirk Jones, owner of American Aluminum Products
- January 23: Larry Striplin, Jr, businessman and philanthropist
- January 26: Bo Smith, meat market manager and murder victim
- January 29: Kell Osborne, soul singer
- February 18: Patti Wheeler, radio-show host
- March 5: Mickey Gee, owner of The Pants Store
- April: Stuart Shevin, president of Standard Furniture
- April 7: Emil Menzel, behavioral psychologist
- May 4: Edward, a 3-year-old giraffe at the Birmingham Zoo
- May 6: George Lindsey, actor
- May 8: Lola Mae Jones Coates, dance teacher and choreographer
- May 13: Tony Brandino, founder of the Brandino Brass Co.
- May 15: Richard Lytle, surgeon
- May 31: Thomas Tolbert, former Bessemer City Council member
- June 19: Deandrea "Teddy T" Thomas, rapper
- July 3: Nancy Stricklin, author and filmmaker
- July 6: Clyde Goode, University of Alabama football player
- July 11: Leonard Slick, business owner
- July 15: Jerry Bentley, historian
- July 16: Harald Herglotz, master engraver for Bromberg's
- July 25: Phil Neel, sports artist
- July 27: R. G. Armstrong, actor
- Bert Miller: former Birmingham City Council member
- July 30: Larry Drummond, Drummond Company executive
- August 3: Frank Evans, former Birmingham Black Barons player and manager
- August 22: Allen Shaffer, bookseller
- August 23: Joe Hendricks, Civil Rights guard
- September 1: Gene Edelman, educator and civic activist
- September 25: Eleanor Kidd, model and philanthropist
- October 14: J. O. Tant Jr, formal wear stores founder
- October 16: Frank Moore Cross, Biblical scholar
- October 24: Robert Juster, city planner
- November 1: John Lee Armstrong, football coach
- November 8: Joel Bearden, Shelby County Commission
- November 8: Herbert Carter, Tuskegee Airman
- November 13: Jeff Roberts, photojournalist
- December 5: Dave Morrison, restauranteur
- December 8: Del "Twinkles" Chambordon, bookkeeper and elf
- December 9: Bill Featheringill, entrepreneur and venture capitalist
- December 19: Inez Andrews, gospel singer
- December 26: Mark Reynolds, drummer
- December 28: Jon Anthony, former WSGN-AM deejay
- Theresa Nail, wife of Judge Tommy Nail
- 2012 Alabama Waterfowl Stamp by Jim Denney of Alexander City
- "Fatal Honeymoon", based on the death of Tina Watson, aired on Lifetime.
- The 2011 documentary short film The Barber of Birmingham aired nationally on PBS.
- "Birmingham", a song by Shovels and Rope
- November: The Yankees mural was completed on the side of the Wininger Law Firm building.
- January 18: A ribbon-cutting ceremony was held for the new Hueytown High School.
- February 2: Ground was broken for Regions Field.
- April 15: Dorothy Jemison Day Theater at the Alabama School of Fine Arts
- June 5: Benjamin Russell Hospital for Children was dedicated.
- June: UAB Steam Plant
- June: Clay City Hall
- September: Cahaba Center at Grandview
- October 22: The historic covered Swann and Easley Bridges reopened to traffic after restoration.
- December: New Castle Park in Gardendale opened.
- 29 Seven, Lakeview
- B. L. Harbert International international operations campus, Lakeshore Crossings
- Gardendale-Martha Moore Public Library was renovated and expanded.
- Greenwood Park, East Birmingham
- Mountain Brook Municipal Complex, Crestline Village
- Shades Valley Family YMCA renovations
- Tuggle Elementary School, Enon Ridge
- Center Point Elementary School was demolished after suffering heavy damage from the January 2012 tornado outbreak
- UAB Studio Arts
- Buchanan, Charles (2012) Fading Ads of Birmingham. Charleston, South Carolina: The History Press ISBN 9781609494834
- Hollis, Tim (2012) Loveman's: Meet Me Under the Clock. Images of America series. Charleston, SC: Arcadia Publishing. ISBN 1609493427
- Lee, Helen Shores & Barbara Sylvia Shores (2012) The Gentle Giant of Dynamite Hill: The Untold Story of Arthur Shores and His Family's Fight for Civil Rights. Grand Rapids, Michigan: Zondervan Press ISBN 9780310336204
- Sepsas, Niki (2012) Hellenic Heartbeat in the Deep South: A History of the Greek Community in Birmingham, Alabama.
- 2012 Birmingham Barons
- 2012 municipal elections
- 2012 general election
- 2012 Iron Bowl
- 2012 Sidewalk Moving Picture Festival
- 2012 UAB Blazers football
In 2012, Europe experienced a debt crisis. The Encyclopædia Britannica discontinued its print edition. Queen Elizabeth II celebrated her diamond jubilee. The final 21st century Venus transit occurred. A mass shooting took place at a movie theatre in Aurora, Colorado. The Summer Olympics were held in London. CERN announced the discovery of a new particle with properties consistent with the Higgs boson after experiments at the Large Hadron Collider. Curiosity, the Mars Science Laboratory mission's rover, successfully landed on Mars. Austrian skydiver Felix Baumgartner broke several records during a space dive out of the Red Bull Stratos helium-filled balloon from 24 miles over Roswell, New Mexico. Hurricane Sandy struck the east coast. Barack Obama won the re-election as President. Twenty-six people, mostly children, were killed by a gunman at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Connecticut.
The top-grossing films in 2012 included The Avengers, The Dark Knight Rises, The Hunger Games, Skyfall, and The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey. Argo took the Academy Award for Best Picture. Best Director went to Ang Lee (Life of Pi), Best Actor went to Daniel Day-Lewis (Lincoln), and Best Actress went to Jennifer Lawrence (Silver Linings Playbook).
Top pop music hits in 2012 included "Call Me Maybe" by Carly Rae Jepsen, "One More Night" by Maroon 5, "Somebody That I Used to Know" by Gotye featuring Kimbra, and "We Are Young" by fun. featuring Janelle Monáe. The Grammy for Record of the Year went to "Somebody That I Used to Know", Album of the Year went to "Babel" by Mumford & Sons, Song of the Year went to "We Are Young", and Best New Artist went to fun.
Notable deaths in 2012 included singer Etta James, singer Whitney Houston, singer Davy Jones, comic artist Jean "Moebius" Giraud, journalist Mike Wallace, television host Dick Clark, children's author Maurice Sendak, hairdresser Vidal Sassoon, singer Donna Summer, singer Robin Gibb, author Ray Bradbury, actor Andy Griffith, actor Ernest Borgnine, author Stephen Covey, astronaut Sally Ride, film director Tony Scott, comedian Phyllis Diller, astronaut Neil Armstrong, religious leader Sun Myung Moon, singer Andy Williams, politician George McGovern, actor Larry Hagman, actor Jack Klugman, and former general Norman Schwarzkopf.
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